Hi guys, welcome to VENTS! How have you been?
SALLAS: Absolutely superlative.
Can you talk to us more about your latest single “Apex Predator”?
SALLAS: Well, I recorded it naked. The rest of the band and the producer had to avert their eyes as my substantial junk swung back and forth, pendulum-like, to the song’s driving rhythm.
Did any event in particular inspired you to write this song?
CROSTY: Josh and Alex came up with a White Pony riff in Alex’s basement and then I wrote stuff over it.
How was the filming process and experience behind the video?
SALLAS: We worked with Brandon Kummer, who was fantastic. Really great guy. We’ve known him for a while through some of the bands he’s played in (No King, Long Point) but this was our first time filming with him. We’ll work with him again.
For the shot of Kyle falling at the beginning of the video – that lasts about half a second – we had to stack old, broken pieces of wood against a wall and have Kyle climb them. He then grabbed on to the ceiling and dropped about twenty feet down when the camera was rolling. Pretty dangerous stuff… but we must suffer for our art.
The single comes off your new album Speak True Evil – what’s the story behind the title?
SALLAS: I wanted to make the title as KVLT as possible, planting the seeds for our future career as a black metal outfit.
But actually… okay. “Speak True Evil” asserts the legitimacy of free speech as asserted by thinkers like Mill, Paine, Luxemburg, and Hitchens. As Mill writes, ‘If all mankind minus one, were of one opinion, and only one person were of the contrary opinion, mankind would be no more justified in silencing that one person, than he, if he had the power, would be justified in silencing mankind.’ After all, it is as much the right of the listener to hear as it is the speaker to talk – enforced silence imprisons man in the cage of his own perspective. The title, then, encourages listeners to ‘speak true evil’.
CROSTY: Our drummer is also a jazz fan, and wanted to reference Wayne Shorter’s “Speak No Evil.” So – there you go. You’re welcome, Sallas!
How was the recording and writing process?
SALLAS: Grueling, but that’s how we like it. We worked on the record for about 2 weeks straight, long days. We recorded close to home this time and so we didn’t have to sleep overnight in the studio (which we’ve done before). We used a few unorthodox instruments (knives, paper-covered drums), which was fun.
What was it like to work with Wayne Cochrane and how much did that relationship develop?
SALLAS: We worked with Wayne on our last record too, and we’ve always had a good rapport with him. This time around we were putting a lot more time into the guitar tones, and that resulted in 4 microphones on 3 different amps recorded simultaneously – then Wayne had to blend all those tones to get the final sound. Oh, and did I mentioned Kyle played a bunch of guitar parts on the album, along with Josh and Crosty? That meant the number of tracks on each song were absurd. We actually broke ProTools with Sky on Fire.
How much did he get to influence the album?
SALLAS: We always value his input, though this time his influence was largely on the production side. With that said, he had a few small suggestions for the songs, and we were glad for them. He also helped me on the string section for Sky on Fire.
What role does Burlington play in your writing?
CROSTY: Burlington is the city our practise space is inside of.
How Thrice has influence your music?
SALLAS: Admirable eclectisism, Dustin’s beard.
CROSTY: Apex chorus riffs. I wanted to match Teppei there.
SALLAS: Crosty was more influenced by Sum 41’s “Ma Poubelle” than anything Thrice ever recorded, to be honest.
What aspect of hope did you get to explore on this record?
SALLAS: We got the explore the o, as in Oh my, this sounds SICK.
Any plans to hit the road?
SALLAS: We’ll be playing Warped Tour on July 17th in Toronto, and then we’re travelling across Canada for a couple of weeks, going to Ottawa, Montreal, Oshawa, Guelph, and a few other cities. Gonna be good!
What else is happening next in Kill No Albatross’ world?
SALLAS: We’re on CHCH television July 20th. Hopefully there will be a party at George Crotty’s place later this year that we’ll go too. Otherwise? Banging our heads to disco albums, antiquing, buying aerobic equipment… the usual.